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Monday, October 18, 2021

Columns

Pokémon Go is a hit with some major faults


Adults and adolescents are revisiting their childhood after the release of Pokémon Go in the US in July. Social media has seen many fads come and go, but Pokémon Go should be considered a success among failures.

Like any wildly popular trend, the Pokémon Go app has seen its fair amount of opposition.

“Pokémon Go is an augmented reality game that uses real-world aspects and  overlays the magical, slightly deranged world of Pokémon in a thinly-veiled ploy to get people out of their houses and exercising for once.”-AJ Willingham, CNN

The app requires the player to travel to the Pokémon in order to catch it. Sometimes, it’s several miles, and often on foot. To many, it has become a source of exercise and a way to socialize.

Within the week of the app’s debut, Pokémon Go had become a hit, and the amount of people milling the streets in search of Pokémon was staggering.

A few weeks in and the excitement has cooled, but the opposition is steady. Iran recently became the first to ban Pokémon Go, citing security concerns, although some believe it is to stop the Pokémon effect that brings hordes of trainers to one area for hours on end.

A class action lawsuit was filed by a New Jersey resident against Pokémon Go creators, Niantic Lab, after players began loitering outside of his home and knocking on his door in order to gain access to Pokémon.

Many players of the game are willing to do anything to get their hands on a rare or even common Pokemon, including trespassing. Some criminals even figured out a way to lure people to a certain spot so that they could rob unsuspecting gamers.

However, in the midst of negative scrutiny, Pokémon Go has succeeded in doing what countless PSA’s and nagging parents have been unable to do for years: Getting their children off their bottoms and out of the house.

While the Pokémon Go app hasn’t necessarily cured the “cell phone zombie” problem the U.S. has seen of late, at least one of its most controversial issues is being tackled. A man from London recently claimed he lost 28 pounds and walked 141 miles in 20 days because of the app.

According to US News, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported as of 2014 that 37.9 percent of adults over 20 in the U.S. struggle with obesity. The number of obese adolescents age 12 to 19 has gone up to 20.5 percent.

If there was ever a need for an app that promotes exercise, it is right now.

Where social media sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter fail to give people the opportunity of face-to-face interaction, Pokémon Go has succeeded in that area, too.

As with all new apps and technology, Pokémon Go is subject to its problems, but glitches do not a failure make.

Opinion Columnist Caprice Carter is a communication junior and can be reached at [email protected]

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